Mitski returns with an anthem on the daily grind.
Mitski’s last two albums, Be the Cowboy and Puberty 2, were among the best of their respective years and of the decade. Anticipation was running high for whatever she would do next, and with “Working for the Knife,” she doesn’t disappoint. Her latest single paints her trademark raw lyrics and connective vocals in new musical colors, a synth and percussion heavy bop that weaves and wobbles like a boat in unsteady waters. Touches of beautiful piano and sharp guitars accentuate the track, unexpected splashes that will make your ears perk up.
“Working for the Knife” finds Mitski reflective on her life and career, swaying between what could have been if she kept studying film in college (“I cry at the start of every movie / I guess ’cause I wish I was making things, too”) to the exhaustion of the never-ending grind we all go through to survive (“I start the day lying and end with the truth”). It’s a song about trying to find personal growth among a never-ending malaise and pressure to be productive. “Now at twenty-nine, the road ahead appears the same / Though maybe at thirty, I’ll see a way to change,” she sings with a sigh and a touch of hope. It’s a powerful, instantly relatable statement that bodes wonderfully well for her next album.
“Working for the Knife” is out now.